The word ‘Dowsing’ covers several methods of tapping into knowledge that is usually beyond our conscious selves, using forked hazel sticks, metal rods, or pendulums made out of a variety of different materials. Dowsing can also cover a huge variety of outcomes, from finding things to divining, decision making or helping with health issues. However, one type of dowsing, that relating to water, has its own special name: water witching.
There is magic and mystique in finding that essential substance for life, water, where none is apparent on the surface of the earth. It would have been a vital skill for pioneers trying to settle in new countries, but not all could dowse for themselves. The fact the results are so visual and seem to come from nowhere only increases the intrigue to the uninitiated. I mostly use a pendulum, and rather than finding water (the convenience of being on the mains with relatively good water quality and taste negating the need for a well) I have dowsed to find stoppages or leaks.
We apparently have a leak at the moment. There is water in the road, starting about 20m down from our house, and they could hear water drawing from our mains. However, that bit of verge has been dug up before and proved to contain an old gas main that fills with water when the ground is saturated. It hasn’t stopped the water board digging up outside our wall, and providing us with much amusement as one man delivered the plastic signs and barriers, two others dug the hole, two more filled in the hole and we are still awaiting collection of the barriers… But the wetter soil on our side of the wall can almost certainly be explained by the change of geology at that point – it is well known locally that digging on our side gets clay, and the other side gets coal. We have known people move house just to cross the road. As for the leak, well it needs a bit more investigation, but given the water wasn’t turned off during their testing we have our suspicions. Time will tell if my dowsing proves correct.
However I am also put in mind how I discovered paganism and witchcraft as a living religion. I wanted to become a better dowser, and after various searches on the ‘net tried “water witch”. The website I found (on witches rather than dowsers) no longer exists, but I found my home that day, Imbolc as it turned out, and I have appreciative memories every time I dowse for water.
I am also celebrating this blog being one year old. To those who have followed me from the beginning, I hope your journey over the past year has been as enlightening, liberating, enjoyable, creative and fruitful as mine has been. Happiness is something that grows with each passing day, as I learn to dream and then honour those dreams. May you all be filled with light.